Northern Pictures makes Walkleys longlist for 'Changing Minds' and 'Cronulla Riots'

2014 Walkley Documentary Award – Longlisted finalists announced

Six outstanding documentaries longlisted for the 2014 Walkley Awards for Excellence in Journalism will be screened at the State Library of NSW in Sydney in October, giving the public a free viewing of the finest work in the field over the past year.

The films capture diverse moments in contemporary life and explore the debates surrounding race, religion and mental illness. They range from the National Black Theatre movement that burgeoned in Redfern in the 1960s and 70s, through to the search for a love marriage in Kabul.

All six films will be screened free for the public at the State Library of NSW over the two days of Friday October 17 and Sunday October 19. Each screening is free, but RSVP is essential.For screening times and to book your place, visit http://walkleydoco2014.eventbrite.com.au

The Walkley Documentary Award shortlist of three films will be unveiled at the State Library of NSW on Thursday October 16. The overall winner will be announced at the 59th Walkley Awards for Excellence in Journalism in Sydney on December 4.

2014 Walkley Documentary Award Longlist

“Changing Minds: The Inside Story”

Alison Black, Cian O’Clery, Jenni Wilks and Karina Holden, Northern Pictures

A ground-breaking documentary series, filmed inside the Psychiatric Unit of Liverpool Hospital, which reveals the nature of mental illness in Australia. The judges felt that the filmmakers, through their incisive interviews with patients, doctors and families, take the viewer into a world that has never been seen before. This observational documentary exposes the audience to characters and situations that will inform and enlighten them about mental illness.

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“Love Marriage in Kabul”

Pat Fiske and Amin Palangi,Bower Bird Films

Mahbooba Rawi is an Afghan-Australian woman who has established an orphanage in Kabul. The film follows Abdul, one of Mahbooba’s rescued orphans, as he attempts to negotiate a love marriage. The judges described “Love Marriage in Kabul” as a finely crafted character-based documentary that provides a compelling insight into traditional Afghan culture and the challenges facing this rapidly changing nation.

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“Code of Silence”

Dan Goldberg and Danny Ben-Moshe, Mint Pictures & Identity Films/ABC TV

“Code of Silence” is the story of a fight for an investigation into allegations of child sex abuse at an Orthodox Jewish boys’ school in Melbourne. The judges felt that the use of interview and actuality, rather than the shorthand of voiceover, makes the narrative even more gripping. As the case against the abusers continues to make news, the documentary is timely and ground-breaking.

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“The Redfern Story”

Sue Milliken and Darlene Johnson, Samson Productions

“The Redfern Story” is a history of both a theatre company and a community, told through the story of the Black Theatre Company, which was formed in the political and cultural ferment of Redfern in the 1970s. The judges felt this meticulously researched and carefully structured documentary sheds new light on a significant moment in Australian history that has strong resonance today, when community groups are struggling to stay afloat.

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“Sons and Mothers”

Louise Pascale and Christopher Houghton, Pop Pictures/ABC TV

“Sons and Mothers” uses creative techniques to focus on the abilities, rather than disabilities, of its subjects. The judges felt that by allowing those in the film to tell their own stories, the film makers take a difficult subject and turn it into a compelling documentary.

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“Cronulla Riots: The Day that Shocked the Nation”

Sue Clothier & Jaya Balendra, Northern Pictures and SBS Online

“Cronulla Riots” is a documentary just as relevant today as it was almost 10 years ago, when tensions spilled over on a Sydney beach. The judges felt the film is a beautifully shot, edited and structured documentary that looks at all sides, as well as exploring the local and international events that led to the riots.